AHMED MARI, Maiduguri
The Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt General Tukur Yusuf Buratai, has denied saying that his troops are not committed to the war against insurgency in the northeast, stressing that he was quoted out of context.
The COAS, who made the denial while gelding in questions at a Joint Press Briefing by the Army and the Borno State Governor, Prof. Babagana Zulum, at the Government House, Maiduguri on Monday said ,“I was quoted out of context”.
“Most of these reports that you see from other journals, including the Boko Haram are exaggerated and mere propaganda. There’s no way when you’re in conflict, you don’t have casually, we have casualties. When necessary we give out these figures, the problem is that, most of our journalists are not contented with what the military gives . They believe that the figure is far more than that”, he added.
The COAS further said: “Up till today, people are still quoting the Metele attack of last year to be 300, some 400 and some 500 killed. But we have given out the correct figure but some are still quoting the wrong figure because they don’t want to believe us. So, why should we give out figures and you don’t believe us and you want us to give something that you think is the correct figure which you got from others?”
“So, we have to be very careful, National Security, Defence and Security are not issues you just talk about and if you go along that way, you will be the victim and first victim for that matter because National Security is not a matter of joke and it’s not a matter of blame game. You shouldn’t blame the military for whatever set back or problem; it’s a collective responsibility. ”
Most of these reports that you see from other journals, including the Boko Haram are exaggerated and mere propaganda. There’s no way when you’re in conflict, you don’t have casually. We have casualties. When necessary, we give out these figures, the problem is that most of our journalists are not contented with what the military gives. They believe that the figure is far more than that”, he added.
“Some newsmen or journalist went to the extent of distorting facts by quoting me out of contest. War against insurgency is a collective one, it is for all but some journalists are fond of promoting Boko Haram insurgents. War against terrorism is a global war, if you support terrorism, it will one day consume you”, the Army chief said.
“Military operations are different from mere activities of may be vigilante, or even the paramilitary or other forces. You don’t just give out information because you want to give out information because somebody is interested. Military operations activities or even personnel are all classified, they are not for public consumption unless if they are absolutely necessary to gain confidence as well as to promote our own collective efforts in securing our country”, Buratai said.
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